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Congressman Questions Prisoner Exchange at Secretary Hagel's Hearing

WASHINGTON D.C. -- Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel faced a Congress led in part by Representative Mac Thornberry on Wednesday, defending the controversial prisoner exchange that freed Bowe Bergdahl from the Taliban.
WASHINGTON D.C. -- Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel faced a Congress led in part by Representative Mac Thornberry on Wednesday, defending the controversial prisoner exchange that Freed Bowe Bergdahl from the Taliban.

Wednesday's hearing centered around two topics, the details of the exchange, and why congress wasn't notified about the deal ahead of time.

Panhandle Congressman Mac Thornberry is adamant the president broke the law with this exchange.

US law states the president must inform congress 30 days before releasing prisoners from Guantanamo Bay. But according to testimony given by Secretary Hagel, they weren't informed because any leak of information could have ended the negotiation's for Bergdahl's release.

Bergdahl was handed over to US officials on May 31st, in exchange for five Taliban detainees who were being held in Guantanamo Bay. Detainees who at one point were high ranking Taliban officials.

"These five guys are really bad guys, they are senior commanders of the Taliban," said Thornberry. "We just spent the last thirteen years trying to take those kind of people off the battlefield, and here in a single stroke we put five of their top ones right back out there."

Bergdahl was the last prisoner of war left from the Afghanistan/Iraq conflicts.

Questions have been raised about Bergdahl's capture, with allegations that he possibly deserted his post. But the details of his capture were not discussed on Wednesday.

Hagel says Bergdahl will be questioned about his disappearance, once he's cleared by doctors.
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